Albert Finney, who rose to fame in British kitchen sink dramas such as Saturday Night and Sunday Morning, has died at the age of 82.

A statement from a family spokesman said: "Albert Finney, aged 82, passed away peacefully after a short illness with those closest to him by his side. The family request privacy at this sad time."

Finney had numerous links on screen with Ireland in movies such as Miller's Crossing, A Man of No Importance, The Playboys, and The Run of the Country.

He made A Man of No Importance in Dublin in 1994, playing Alfie Byrne, a middle-aged bus conductor in Dublin in 1963 with a passion for theatre and Oscar Wilde.

He also appeared with Gabriel Byrne in the Coen brothers' acclaimed gangster movie Miller's Crossing

Finney was nominated for an Oscar five times and began his career at the Royal Shakespeare Company before rising to fame in film.

Julia Roberts with Albert Finney in Erin Brockovich

His big screen break came with his portrayal of "angry young man" Arthur Seaton in Saturday Night and Sunday Morning.

He went on to star in Tom Jones, Murder on the Orient Express, The DresserErin Brockovich, and made his last film appearance in James Bond adventure Skyfall in 2015.

Finney, and his Saturday Night and Sunday Morning co-star Shirley Anne Field, and writer Alan Sillitoe

He also played Winston Churchill in The Gathering Storm, for which he won a Golden Globe and a BAFTA, and the title role in Scrooge and Daddy Warbucks in the musical Annie.

Finney was nominated four times for a Best Actor Oscar and once in the Best Supporting Actor category.

He was the recipient of two BAFTAs from 13 nominations and received a British Academy Fellowship in 2001.

Actor David Morrissey was among the first to pay tribute to Finney on Instagram and Twitter writing: "One of the true great [sic]. Both on stage and screen. A powerhouse of an actor. A real hero of mine. RIP Albert Finney".

Author Martin Knight said Finney's performance in Saturday Night and Sunday Morning "captured the zeitgeist & graced the film that changed British cinema".

London photographer Kevin Cummins shared a photo of Finney in Salford in 1986 in the house where he was born.

Actor Rufus Sewell said Finney was "a great all round example of how to behave".